The recently elected National President of VIEW (Voice, Interests and Education of Women), Jan Roberts, has grown up inside the organisation.
Jan, who now lives in Canberra, first heard about VIEW Club 58 years ago when her mum Norma went to check out her local club. Jan grew up hearing about VIEW, and eventually went along with Norma to see what it was all about.
“My mother went on to serve in different committee positions and as the family grew up and were less dependent on her, she became a Zone Councillor for Penrith and Regional Manager as it then was (now National Councillor) for Penrith, Blue Mountains and the Richmond/Windsor Area,” Jan says.
“In later years, she moved to the ACT serving on various committees and when she came off committee work, she said ‘my daughter can now take over’.”
Jan joined her local VIEW Club in Western Sydney in 1986; 32 years later, she continues her work as part of both the Gungahlin Day and Tuggeranong Evening clubs.
“I knew that I wanted to experience the friendships and the supportive network of women helping Australian children in need so it inspired me to join VIEW.
“My mother is very proud of my achievements with VIEW, including now being the National President, leading over 15,000 members in 320 communities. She is the most supportive person who stands beside me and says ‘that’s my daughter!’ with a huge smile on her face.”
The Smith Family runs 320 VIEW Clubs across Australia, where women come together and use a social club environment to raise funds for the Smith Family’s Learning for Life program, sponsoring 1,200 students and providing them with financial support for education essentials and ongoing support.
Jan says it is “moving” to see the smiles on the student’s faces as she attends the Learning for Life graduation ceremonies.
“Knowing that VIEW is truly making a difference to the lives of these disadvantaged Australian children and their families is a humbling experience,” she says.
“My goal is to support our organisation to continue to grow and make a difference. I look forward to assisting VIEW members to connect with The Smith Family and others in their communities so we can grow our membership and enable better life outcomes for more disadvantaged Australian children and young people.”